TEXT: Proverbs 23:19-21:
19 Hear thou, my son, and be wise, and guide thine heart in the way.
20 Be not among winebibbers; among riotous eaters of flesh:
21 For the drunkard and the glutton shall come to poverty: and drowsiness shall clothe a man with rags.
This is an uncomfortable subject for many of us, but if you listen and take heed, this particular series can not only change your life spiritually, but it can save your life physically.
This passage touches on some of the consequences of not only gluttony but drunkenness (gluttony of another form). It also expresses the type of behavior that extreme gluttony can bring about. This passage is directed to Solomon’s son, and he is advised not to “be among” — today we would say “don’t hang out with” — “winebibbers and riotous eaters of flesh.”
The Hebrew word for “winebibber” indicates one who becomes intoxicated or drunk particularly at a banquet or feast. This is the same word used of Noah who got intoxicated and passed out in his tent. A winebibber is simply one who drinks too much wine or fermented drink. He or she is a glutton for such beverages.
The “riotous eaters” of verse 20 are those who are lavish in their eating habits. They engage and indulge in food with the enthusiasm and revelry of Mardi Gras partiers. Every meal is a party to them — an opportunity to be excessive in eating. One commentary states, “It is not just the amount of food, but the manner in which the food is eaten that makes a man a glutton. The fact that gluttony is mentioned with drunkenness further confirms this truth.”
Today, we have many more entertainment options to indulge in. But, at the time of this Scriptural writing, feasts where food was abundant and wine flowed were the main attractions. Apparently, there were people who lived for these events. They ate and drank riotously. The warning here is for the wise person not to hangout with gluttons and drunkards, lest their bad habits rub off. With this in mind, are you a drunkard and a glutton? Are there some people in your life who are gluttons and drunkards who are a bad influence on you? Are there some people you need to separate from in order to avoid the consequences of this twin sin.
PRACTICAL STEP: In “The RAVE Diet and Lifestyle,” Mike Anderson shares substitutes for the use of vegetable oil. He writes, “Instead of using vegetable oils for cooking, cook at lower temperatures and use water to make your own broth. You’ll be surprised at how well they work. And with a little practice, you’ll soon find you prefer the cleaner taste. It’s like the difference between eating peaches in heavy syrup and eating fresh peaches right off the tree. Once you stop using oils, you will be able to taste the difference and you’ll never go back.
“Oil substitutes for sautéing include: apple juice, sherry, vegetable stock, vinegars, wine, beer
“Oil substitutes for use in baked goods include: applesauce, pureed bananas, pureed stewed prunes
“For salads, choose a dressing without oil or a vinegar-based dressing, such as a Balsamic or brown-rice-seasoned vinegar dressing. Or try citrus juices in place of salad dressing. Many people have started off with this diet and could not stand the taste of vinegar — but now prefer it because their tastes have changed. Your tastes will change, too, if you give this a chance. ”
In closing, as we focus on overcoming the sin of gluttony, and managing our bodies as God intended, we must not lose sight of the most important part of our existence — our spiritual life. Even those of you who are fit, who eat right, and who exercise regularly must still address the condition of your soul. You may keep your body in perfect condition till the day you die, but you will still die — we all will, and the only thing that will matter is the condition of your soul. Is your soul in shape? Is your soul in right standing with God?
The only way to make sure of that is to trust Jesus Christ as your Savior from sin and the consequences of sin. He alone can save your soul, put you in right standing with God, and ensure that you do not perish in Hell. Now, if you do not know Jesus Christ as your Savior, here is how you can trust Him today.
First, accept the fact that you are a sinner, and that you have broken God’s law. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now that is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your Salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. I am sorry for my sins, and today I choose to turn from my sins. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. I trust Jesus Christ as my Savior and I choose to follow Him as Lord from this day forward. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you believed in your heart that Jesus Christ died on the Cross, was buried, and rose again, allow me to say, congratulations on doing the most important thing in life and that is accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour! For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
If you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior today, please email me at [email protected] and let us know. There is some free material that we want to send you. If you have a prayer request, please e-mail that to us as well, and we will pray for you until you tell us to stop.
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.
He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.
He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.
He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.